Tagged: Gentoo Linux



OpenStack (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I think I’ve done it. I now have my own home IaaS.

I went for the OpenStack approach, Packstack with RDO on Scientific Linux. In the future I want to replace SL6 with Gentoo on the bare metal, and install the OpenStack packages from portage, but I’ll wait for the work from a Gentoo dev who knows what he’s doing.

This also means that the running hypervisor is KVM, not the Xen that I would rather be using. Technically, there isn’t much difference to them, but Xen is the hypervisor used by AWS, PV images can be booted without fiddling with partitioning and bootloaders. That’s so ’90s.

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Bios (Photo credit: Henrique Vicente)


I’m a big fan of the stage3 install method.


Prepare partitions, format filesystems and make a mount point. Extract a root filesystem into place. Add a kernel and boot loader, reboot and done. The rest is configuration.


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Gentoo FTW!

These past few weeks, there have been some pretty disturbing disruptions for Linux users on rolling release distros.The biggest upset in recent times I’ll describe as “The udev-200 issue”, where the symptoms of an unsupervised update/reboot cycle will present you with a) a system that won’t boot, b) a system without network or c) both.

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Router schematic image (cisco alike)

Router schematic image (cisco alike) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hi future me,

IPv6 is probably ubiquitous when you’re reading this. But I’m speaking too soon, then here’s some quick tips about setting up your own subnet.

I’ll make some assumptions, the network (specifically the router) already has a /64 subnet and prefix. For the sake of example, lets pretend these are:

2001:DB8:1234:5678::/64 - the subnet
2001:DB8:1234:5678::1 - the router inside that subnet

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Secure digital card usb-adapter

Secure digital card usb-adapter (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Hi future me,
Sometimes you’re going to find yourself needing to boot some very archaic CDs. But CD drives might not exist in the future, so you’re stuck with USB to shim the ISO. (I think that first sentence should get all of the Google hits, but lets include some more buzzwords such as LiveCD, LiveUSB, syslinux etc.)


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Hi future me, just a reminder that you forgot this last time. But booting a mactel doesn’t need special “bless”ing. Just remember to install grub2 properly.

grub2-install --target=x86_64-efi --efi-directory=/boot --removable --modules=part_gpt

Also, grub2 doesn’t seem to come with vbe.mod anymore. So on Calculate Linux, edit /etc/default/grub and change GRUB_VIDEO_BACKEND=”vbe” to something sensible. Perhaps “all_video”. Then re-run grub2-mkconfig.


The currently recommended image for Raspberry Pi is the Debian based Raspbian distro.

Playing in this sandbox is a new experience for me. It feels like the Linux I’m used to, but there are some subtle differences. I’d thought I might share my thoughts and experiences.

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Hey future me! I know it’s not that often that you require it, but there are a lot of virtualization solutions out there that use qemu as a backend machine translator.

It isn’t the most optimal vm environment when used on it’s own, but it provides some useful features that other projects build upon.

There’s KVM, Xen-HVM and when you need it in a pinch, raw qemu itself. But there’s something that you’ve never gotten right. Not without external tools and graphical managers. Networking.

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This image shows the chips on a RAM. Deutsch: ...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There’s nothing like a fresh start. Unfortunately last weekend’s reinstall of juniper went less happily than I expected.

A source based distro notices problems quickly. It starts as simple compilation errors. The linker being unable to create a final executable, or being unable to spawn a new shell instance. A bunch of random errors in tasks that usually work.

You start to question your sanity in choosing this OS, it’s been historically reliable. It must be some other reason. But deep down the probability counters are incrementing towards the conclusion that means that no fancy fingerwork will fix. Presenting, The Hardware Problem.

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